Copperas Cove softball coach Shelly Hayes wanted to be closer to her family.

So she is leaving her softball girls behind. The Lady Dawgs are looking for a new leader after Hayes resigned her post Tuesday after one year at the helm. The resignation was effective immediately.

“I told the girls after the bi-district series. I couldn’t lead them on,” Hayes said in a news release, “but I didn’t want to tell them until after the season.”

Hayes guided the Lady Dawgs to their first playoff appearance since 2008 with a fourth-place finish in District 8-5A at 8-6. Copperas Cove (18-17) fell in two-straight games against Mansfield Timberview in a best-of-three bi-district series last weekend in Waco, ending its season.

“Shelly Hayes and the softball coaching staff did a great job in getting our softball team back to the playoffs,” said Copperas Cove girls athletic coordinator Tracy Ranes. “We understand her situation and her need to be close to her family.”

Hayes, who coached at Baird before coming to Copperas Cove, said she intends to continue coaching softball in the San Antonio area.

“There are some opportunities to do so and I’m exploring those,” she said. “There are some family issues and I need to get closer to my family. This has nothing to do with the girls ... They have good players coming back and they can continue in the playoffs, if they want to.”

Contact Nick Talbot at or (254) 501-7569

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